tv C-SPAN2 Weekend CSPAN June 8, 2013 7:00am-8:01am EDT
issued by this president in 2010, we have an entire chapter devoted to research and data information and it was funny because our deputy director, tom mclaughlin, this iconic drug researcher, when he was being confirmed it took two taxicabs to bring his published research to capitol hill, to be reviewed. we like to do things electronically. and capitol hill use stills of the elevator operators. we brought all of these seven copies of published papers and by the time we were working on the president's first drug control strategy and his direction to me was so clear he said i want the voices of the american people in this. we looked at how do you measure the effectiveness and evaluate what we are doing around drugs, how do you measure the problem is that drugs are creating?
we would look at the data and sometimes they are sparse, often several years behind, so you are trying to make these important policy recommendations and reflect on potential legislation, all based on information that is often quite dated and doesn't really give you the information you need to do that so we put an entire chapter in their ad people say tom, you are a great researcher, wonderful this chapter is in there, tom said it was built, they really wanted the information and the data. i learned from my experience as a police chief because people would say we need more research and that was very true but elected officials are sometimes making decisions based upon when you look at the front page of that little box, usually a
little chart, and some huge complex subject and it has charts and graphs, and making policy decisions they look at the pie chart in usa today in the morning, they're proposing some piece of legislation. data and research, in particular, really i can't thank wayne enough and you for inviting me and for me to be a partner with you on this so i want to tell you about the national drug control strategy. my office or our office has been around since 1988. and concern by members of congress, one that i have grown john, but senator biden, it was created because members of congress said tell us about the nation's drug problem and there
was no one person that would give you that information about the nation's drug problem. if you wanted to know about enforcing you call people from the drug enforcement administration. if you wanted to know about incarceration you talk to people at the bureau of prisons. if you wanted to know about treatment you talked to sams a and other groups the what was critical, that we move forward in having one person that members of congress could point their finger at and say tell us about the problem from this grand scale. that is basically what i do. so we don't have command-and-control, we have a lot of authority regarding budgets but we try to knit all these components together to work together to have a very balanced and comprehensive and science based research and drug policy and that is what the national drug control strategy
does. it comes out every year and it highlights in many ways what the scientists have put together as the best ways for this nation to deal with our drug problem. along with that it has a tremendous amount of influence at the state and local level because we have a lot of really smart people who really understand these issues very well, the policy or strategy is very helpful at the local level where those kinds of resources are not always available. internationally, it does have quite a bit of influence. in my visits with russia we have had a bilateral relationship with russia. four years ago i didn't know what a bilateral was but now i know all these things. with my counterpart, he is a real czar, i am befalls czar.
i didn't where my sash is russia is a country where a million people are rejected a heroin. if you look at the drug problem and the health problems in russia and the reduction in longevity, these are all important issues that need to be addressed and they can't be addressed as we say in my business as a police chief that we will arrest our way out of this problem. we won't arrest our way out of the drug problems and we are never going to institutionalize our way out of the mental health challenges all of us face of is important to figure out ways to work together and that is why i am so honored and delighted to be here with all of you so let me tell you, i wouldn't be a good federal employee if i didn't have a few facts and figures to give you. people ask about the cost of our
drug problem. it is $193 billion a year, criminal justice costs, health care costs, lost productivity. there is the huge financial burden this country pays as a result of drug problems that of course we also know there is a huge burden we all bear too and that is loss of life, the acts of violence, many things that also occur and the real tragedies and when we look at our problems with prescription drugs which many of you are all too familiar with and loss of 16,000 lives mostly due to painkillers it is a significant problem. when i was first getting ready for confirmation and being briefed about issues i knew the drug law enforcement area i didn't understand as much as i do now about prevention and treatment but when i was being briefed, you do no more people died from drugs than gunshot
wounds in this country and is driven by prescription drugs moseley and i was totally surprised. i said i was a police chief, i spent a lot of time paying attention to what harms people in my community and i didn't recognize the prescription drug problem. i went back and test a few of my colleagues and friends, judges, prosecutors, police chiefs and they were unaware of it but now we know more people die as a result of drug abuse than die in car crashes so relieve this issue is the number one cause of accidental death in this country but it is something we can do something about. i come from a profession that usually is not known for its optimism, known for its cynicism at times. i have to tell you in my four years i could not be more optimistic about figuring out ways we are working together to
turn the corner on this entire discussion around drugs. unfortunately the discussion oftentimes has been an either/or. war on drugs or legalize drugs as an answer. you know that if there is one area that is complex and difficult whether it is treatment of mental health problems or the substance abuse fields, how incredibly complex it is and you know if somebody gives you a simple answer to a complex problem, we all know we can be assured of one thing, that answer is wrong. war on drugs and incarceration isn't an answer to this problem but neither is legalizing and making drugs more widely available and accessible. we think the policy we put together in the national drug control strategy which is the evidence and science base, we
think this third way is actually a very good way to deal with it. it recognizes the importance of prevention programs, recognizes prevention at the community level. we had 700 drug free communities, wonderful organizations with a small amount of seed money, that we hope to put in the hands of people at a local level, voices that the local level, voices that are probably perhaps a bit more trusted than when somebody parachutes in from inside the beltway. those local voices are important when it comes to prevention and they have to knit together as part of a requirement for the grant the fact that they are involved with the law enforcement community, that they are involved with elected officials, school system often times faith based groups and others so they all tend to feel they have a stake in this and then we recognize the importance of treatment. the president has asked in this
budget for more treatment money than in the paths. we spent and will spend more in the treatment area than the domestic law enforcement side and that is a significant step forward. we recognize treatment that is done early when the problem is recognized early, it just as we do in the mental health field, when it is recognized and treated at an early time, it is often less expensive but also often more successful so the treatment is important and the treatment behind the walls is particularly important. we release a study every year about the number of people that have been arrested and a variety of jails across the country there is drug testing and interviews that are done with these people and it doesn't matter whether they are arrested for shoplifting or some other crime. we learn their substance use problems are often very much tied to whatever that arrest is so we know the told that it takes on the community and the
cost. we also know the toll it takes on them. as a police chief in made absolutely no sense that a person is in custody and have a drug problem and we aren't providing some type of treatment program to them, that we are making a huge mistake monetarily. i have a couple other things. okay. i was ready to pitch in and spend two hours talking to you, but i want to tell you how proud i am to be here, how much i look forward to partnering with all of you, we are looking forward to this association. i can't be more pleased and more on urge than to turn the floor back over to our partners that a substance abuse and mental health services administration, apollo who is well known for olive view, i thank you for letting me have a few minutes
with this group. thank you very much. [applause] >> paolo del vecchio got here a little late so we were sweating, wondering what happened to him on route, so we had a backup plan that we were going to do kind of the q&a but paolo del vecchio has blessed us with his presence. i am pleased to welcome paolo del vecchio, he is director of the substance abuse and mental health services administration center for mental health services. most of you are much more familiar with the acronym samsa. it is the lead federal agency designed to reduce the impact of substance use and mental illness across this country.
he was the first consumer affairs specialist hired by samsa in 1995, he promoted consumer participation and all aspects of samsa's policies and operations ranging from public education--to developing evidence based practices to address the needs of those suffering with mental health conditions. he was also the center for mental health services associate director for consumer affairs where he managed samsa's president setting activities addressing issues such as discrimination and stigma, consumer rights, wellness, recovery and trauma. paolo del vecchio is committed to improving lives of people with mental illnesses and is an extraordinary advocate, one of my boys in be in this position for nine month is to be a partner with people like paolo del vecchio.
he is not just a bureaucrat. i myself am a recovering state bureaucrats icahn identified. paolo del vecchio is a genuine human being who operates an doesn't just talk the talk about what walk as we used to say in another decade or so ago or decades ago. so paolo del vecchio, welcome. [applause] >> good morning, everyone. i was stuck on the belt way out there in this horrible traffic this morning so it is great to have an opportunity to be here with you this morning. hi am pleased to be sharing the stage with director r. gil kerlikowske and appreciate it the partnership samsa has,
working together, one of my roles in addition to being a vote director of the center for mental health services is leading samsa and support initiative and we have a wonderful partnership, supporting recovery oriented approaches for people with mental health and addiction issues. this includes supporting recovery oriented systems of care by states, tribes and local governments, recovery oriented systems, coordinated networks of services and supports that our strength based and recovery focus. for quality of life for individuals, families and communities, the very definition of what twenty-first century health care is all about and samsa appreciates the support. show you all aware this week, a historic week for mental health in america. particularly for the concept of recovery.
for the first time in a long time the mental-health needs of the nation are in national priority. this past monday -- this past monday the presidents barack obama and vice president biden announced the international conference on mental health and used their leadership to put an end to the sidelines and shame associated with mental illness and raise the topic to the national stage. president obama said in his opening remarks, quote, we want to let people living with mental health challenges know they are not alone and we have got to make sure we are committed to support those fellow americans. i know mental health america, you are doing just that. president obama said something remarkable. he said recovery is possible and i have my bumper sticker on my
car, recovery is patriotic as well. it is all about life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. it is about people having access to quality health and behavioral health care, people having home housing, people having purpose including employment, and importantly about people having community, the essential around them. people with mental illnesses, the president said, receive support, go on to lead happy and productive lives, the president went even further and acknowledge the power of support, peer support, and support of caregivers, and for many people with mental illness recovery can be challenging. what helps more than anything, would get some a friends and
loved ones strength, you are not alone. you are surrounded by people who care about you, on a journey to get well. we are here for you, he said. these are powerful words for improving mental health of the nation and the responsibilities to create positive change. we know recovery is possible, we see it every day in the work that we do. we know understanding, acceptance and support experience these conditions are an essential part of recovery. i know this is true because i am in recovery and my recovery journey came at this meeting. many of you know i got my start at a mental health association, southeastern pennsylvania chapter. and the shout out to joseph
rogers as my mentor and leading the in to this career and a special acknowledgment to susan rogers for her acknowledgment that this conference. [applause] >> i once felt so isolated and alone with my own anxiety and depression that i came close to ending my life. i stand before u.s. the first self identified person with a mental health problem reading the nation's center for mental health services. [applause] >> thank you. [applause] >> thank you, a please.
the reason i am standing before you today is because of folks like you. some 15, 20 years ago as we read getting underway a group of advocates, consumer, family leaders and others staged a sit in in the office of bernie aaron's and irresponsive that sit in barry issued a letter, promised he would hire a person to work in consumer affairs. i ended up applying and getting that position. let me just share a little story about that. as i began that job one of the workers, special assistant to the director said it was going to be her particular job to take care of this consumer coming in to work at the center and she is
a nurse, very well meaning, and someone was going to come in shuffling and a ruling at the mouth. she was going to take care of this person. three years later we were married. [laughter and applause] >> 16 years later we have three beautiful children. two dogs. it wasn't any specific treatment, and courage and humility to share their stories, and sitting on the sidelines, individual and collective, mental health illnesses and response to the people who
experience them. i found peers who believed in the hope and promise of recovery. this wonderful symbol of mental health america cast from the discarded change and shackles of those once restrained, people with mental illness reminds us that the invisible chains of misunderstanding and discrimination continued to bind people with mental illnesses. those of us who know the facts must stand up for the truth. research reveals americans over the last 50 years have a much greater scientific understanding about mental illness than ever before. and misperceptions, attitudes and prejudicial beliefs have grown dramatically over 50 years particularly when we look at measures such as would you want someone with depression to marry into your family? would you want someone with
schizophrenia as the co-worker doubling the negative responses to key messages. one of those reasons is violence. only three to 5% of violence is committed by people with mental illness who were likely to be victims and perpetrators of violence. education about mental illness is not sufficient. and deserves a life worth living. and president obama's organizing community conversations. it is a follow-up to monday's meeting. to support these gatherings samsa, a community conversations about mental-health provide step-by-step information, and
participants examined participants of mental-health. and create communities where they flourish. and you can attest to this as well. and mental health community, we had much more of the broader community it there as well. we had people from social media outlets from across the spectrum and that is who we need to reach. the president, when he announced the response to sandy hook in january entitled his program now is the time and that really is the time for us to act and for you to act in your local communities, this is your opportunity to convene these community conversations. you folks are so well positioned to take it and leverage what
happened on monday across communities and states across the country. what i mentioned will be released on our new web site www. mentalhealth.gov. easy to remember. i encourage you to check that out. the president made clear our efforts to increase understanding and awareness of mental health building on a strong foundation with wallace and one that you help us create. one of the ways we are doing it is through expanding health care coverage, the affordable care act will extend mental-health, substance abuse disorder benefits and parity protection systems sixty two million americans. from eleven million individuals who will gain health care coverage for the first time for those people with mental health and addiction issues. it begins in october, and again there will you folks can play to
enroll people as that begins is crucial and we are supporting young people. administrations, 2014 budget includes $50 million for samsa to support project aware. well as the resiliency and action, we love our acronyms in the federal government. the goal of project aware is to increase awareness of mental health issues and connect young people who have behavioral health issues to needed services cote partner in with departments of education and justice on this initiative, 2014 budget office includes $50 million for work force activities to help train 5,000 additional professionals to work with students and young adults. part of this for the first time will include $10 million to increase the number of trained peers who served as recovery coaches, prevention specialists and mental health and addiction.
[applause] >> we all know this is contingent on congressional approval and the funding program. we are excited about pier aspects because we know we will live to experience, peers are able to build trust and foster connections especially with young people who may be reluctant to access care. held the law, road to recovery and wellness and hoping our nation's veterans, department of veterans affairs had 1600 new mental health providers. over the last nine month including 300 more peer specialists. this summer, part of the national conversation on mental-health, the a health centers will conduct mental health summits along with their community partners and connect veterans and their families to community-based mental health resources and invite returning warriors back into the
community. clearly changing the conversation is necessary but not sufficient to create a culture of recovery in america. we must identify and replicated innovative community based solutions to behavioral health needs. it can begin as mental health america makes clear by bringing wellness' home. we need to take care of our bodies. we know the average life expectancy for people with serious mental illnesses is about age 53. putting that in perspective, the average for the population as a whole last time the average life expectancy for all americans was 53 was in the 1920s. for those of us with serious mental illness we have not had any progress in life expectancy in some 90 years. for me, i turn 51 this past april and the thought that if i die in the next two years the
trauma and tragedy that will mean for my family as well as the loss we have had for too many brothers and sisters and family members, next five years an estimated 1 million people with behavioral health conditions will die from heart attacks or strokes. that is not surprising when you consider the current rate of smoking among adults with mental illness or addictions is 94% higher than among adults without these disorders. i am a former pack a day smoker myself, smokes for almost 20 years. how i quit, my wife to be set either you quit or we are not going to go out again. sometimes -- a little bit of coercion can be a good thing. individuals at behavioral health
conditions want to quit, and stop smoking treatments. individuals and serious mental illnesses can lose weight when offered common-sense solutions. most importantly we have to address the culture of diminished expectations, diminished expectations for people with psychiatric disabilities in america. people with mental illnesses have the lowest rate of employment of any disability group. some estimates, 90% people with serious mental illness, unemployed or underemployed. we need to break the prozac ceiling. we have it backwards when it comes to psychiatric disabilities, we don't have to become less symptomatic before returning to work, work reduces our symptoms. in fact, i have heard it said that empowerment is described as a, quote, decent paycheck at the end of the week. to be well we also have to
nurture our spirits. recovery for me as the faith based practice. many of us acknowledge spirituality playing a key part of our recovery. i see it as recovery as faith in the human spirit to overcome incredible circumstance. sometimes when we feel connected to something larger than ourselves it enhances our physical and mental health, some people find this in nature. a recent nimh study found a walk in the woods is as effective as an antidepressant. i was at a meeting a couple months ago and said when am i going to get my prescription for a walk in the woods along with my anti-depressants? i encourage you to take one step of wellness today over the last five years, we have had wellness' initiative and samsa, try to help promote wellness and
reduce the early mortality. samsa.gov for national well as we. enduring recovery month, last year we had our second annual well this week with more than 210 events, 36 states in pr. we don't have to wait until september to begin. now is the time. harvey rosenthal from new york calls it the perfect storm for recovery. perfect storm for recovery. we cannot afford to fund in the fish and costly services that don't produce outcomes. we do know what works. new evidence based practices like supported education have significantly expanded to pave the road for recovery and
wellness. and the center care including shared decisionmaking and patient activation. these the the key components of recovery and what is critical to play in this. supporting choice wallace and a life beyond formal services. they promote trust because they have been there and foster the essential message of hope. when it comes to promoting wellness, we are leading the way. and pioneered the concept as having individuals take care of health and wellness. being embraced in all health care in the u.s. and around world's, health counselors providing screening and preventive pension for people with mental health conditions in chile, you've gone the, pakistan and india. in this country it -- in this country peer coach trained inaction management. chronic disease self management,
medicaid reimbursable in the state of georgia, and recovery tools directly in the hands of individuals as needed. this is the future of health care in america. increasing awareness of mental health issues and making it easier for people to seek services to promote recovery and wellness and take more than the efforts of the federal government, it takes all of us. monday's white house event the president applauded the dozens of commitments made by public and private stakeholders' across the country. he acknowledged the national association of broadcasters who are developing a public awareness campaign to reduce negative attitudes through television, radio ads and social media. acknowledged other organizations helping young people make new commitments such as secondary school principals to hold assemblies on mental health awareness like the ymca who will
teach its staff and summer camp counselors to recognize signs of mental health programs. he recognized communities of faith who committed to launching new conversations about mental-health in our houses of worship. this is just the tip of the iceberg. now is the time. each of you in this room is making the difference by the work you do every day. you have been on the forefront of efforts to make clear behavioral health is essential to health, you helped us demonstrate prevention works treatment effective and people recover. you are changing the conversation from one of elvis to one of wallace and recovery. to wrap up my comments here this morning some 50 years ago in 1963 president kennedy called for a bold new approach to mental-health one in which the cold mercy of custodial care would be replaced by the open
warmth of community. 50 years later this week another president, president barack obama called on us to fulfil that promise by providing the open warmth of community. these closing remarks president obama said, quote, we can help people with mental health, continue to be great colleagues and the people we love. we give out some pain and given new sense of hope but requires all of us to act on all of us to act. the spirits of president kennedy and obama, visions for the future. envision everyman, woman and child in this country, mental health and addictions. 50 years ago this summer we saw the march on washington.
dr. king's to paraphrase him. 50 years from now, the contents of our character, not the content of our treatment plans. [applause] >> 50 years from now i hope we will talk about mental health conditions without shame or fear of recrimination. we help people get and stay well. we help unlock the vast potential, the vast potential of people with mental health problems to contribute to areas like medicine and the arts to politics and business, sports and religion. now is the time to work on that vision. i stand ready to work with you, samhsa does, in every way for us to act to make this vision a reality. thank you for the opportunity to share with you this morning.
[applause] >> thank you very much. we were fortunate to have the opportunity to have been put into vice president biden's task force commissioned by the president following the sandy hook tragedy. as we engage in conversations with the vice president as well as the various secretaries, we don't need another study, we don't need another commission. there are some that are still on shelves but still have a lot of relevance to the challenges we face because they were full of recommendations that have never been implemented but one thing we very clearly advocated for was that we wanted this president, president obama to
use the bully pulpit of the presidency to take mental health out of the shadows. those where the exact words that we used in meeting with vice president and secretaries. when kathleen sibelius had her first press conference following the recommendations of that committee her very words were it is time to make mental health all of the shadows and the white house conference that convened this past monday, on recommendation to take mental health out of the shadows and used his position to elevate the conversation that after 104 years that his organization has been in existence that we still have not been successful despite a great many games. significantly reducing the discrimination that still exists
in our culture regarding people with these conditions. at the white house conference we are fortunate to be there as well. i was personally fortunate to be able to garner the floor for a minute or two and i raise two issues. one was that we are in the advent of the affordable care act's full implementation which is going to result in many millions more americans having coverage. that is a good thing. also potentially increased demand, in 2009 without the bankrupt crisis and we were sitting on the verge of launching into a national depression, we were in very good shape when it came to capacity
than. since that time our system state by state has lost somewhere in the neighborhood between 4.5, and five billion dollars so if we weren't in good shape in 2009 and we are standing here in 2013, with the advent of the affordable care act around the corner, with increased demand, and overstressed system with insufficient capacity and insufficient resources to meet the demand, we potentially have a crisis coming. the other piece of this challenge is that we are far under capacity when it comes across, when it comes to all of the disciplines. we have are too few psychiatrists. my last position was io of the mental health center, if you try
to recruit for a child psychiatrist today it is more than a challenge. the shortage is even more dire. whether we talk about social work, a psychiatric nurse specialist, etc. the telemedicine technology, the growth of peer specialization can offset some of that but it is not enough. in my remarks at the white house this week there was a contingent of congress sitting to my left and i looked at them and said it isn't just about the affordable care act being implemented, it isn't just about the promise of integration of mental-health with the rest of health care. that is all the promise and we support that and applaud that, but if there are additional resources forthcoming we are going to be more than challenge. the second thing i had the opportunity to bring to the
floor that day was the fact that parity was passed four years ago but we still don't have any rules around the implementation of parity. it is still full of loopholes in terms of how it could potentially be integrated within the affordable care act and if that is not done well, we could find ourselves on the other end of the implementation of health care reform, with dismantling a lot of the system that we spent 50 years in building, largely dismantled, and what replaces it in this integration model is not something that is necessarily better than what we had. it has never been an equal
system, as a decision from the supreme court with brown versus education separate is not equal and it has never been equaled for us but integration necessarily won't be equal either. we are on the verge of a perfect storm. there is tremendous potential for us but we have a very short window of opportunity. all the action now is that the state level. there are plans being laid across this country to form health care homes, accountable care organizations, health care exchanges and as i travel around the country and i talked to our constituents, enough of us aren't at the table in those planning sessions and too of and i ask what is happening in your community? i don't know. who is doing the planning around
this? we can't expect to be at the table if we don't even know there is a table. so i urge all of you, we will do everything we can. we increased our operating budget by 25%. so we can provide you more of the tools you need so that if you get yourself to the table you are not positioned to better assert yourself to assure that healthcare's realize. i can't emphasize that enough and i know we are all undercapacity, we are all extremely busy but this is an opportunity that we can't afford to miss.
those are my closing remarks for this morning. i have a few housekeeping things to take care of before i did you farewell this morning. you will notice we have had a lot of support for this conference. i want to thank you for being our diamond sponsor. i want to thank our other sponsors and partnering organization and as you leave the ballroom today we have all our exhibitors set up outside. please take time to visit with them. we have a rich mix of folks for a variety of resources that can serve us in a variety of ways. i hope you have taken advantage of health and wellness type of things that i had going on and we will continue to have going on and we have a slate of breakout sessions coming up that will begin at 10:15 which will
be followed by expert learning and networking sessions and meet the office session at 11:00 a.m.. locations for these sessions are in your on site guides and as you look at the outside guide you will see our announcement that we will be meeting next year for our national conference in denver, colorado. [applause] >> one of the main reasons for choosing colorado is because of the implementation of the affordable care act and colorado has been one of the most progressive states and is well in front of the curve when it comes to some really innovative models for implementation and collaboration in local communities throughout colorado. we want in 2014 to be able to highlight for all of our attendees what are the most
promising integrated models that exist around the country, be able to provide you with a report card on how implementation is going particularly as it relates to integration and implementation of full parity. so with that, thank you for being here and i look forward to having some time with all of you. thank you. [applause] >> sunny land the state in southern california was the site of president obama's meeting with chinese president yesterday. we visited this historic estate that has been a retreat for 7 u.s. presidents. >> sunnylands is the estate of walter and lee and or ehrenburg.
they built this as a winter residence completed in 1966 and they lived until their death in 2002-2009. sunnylands has been referred to as the camp david of the west and that is of course because presidents came here to relax and get away from the hustle and bustle of washington d.c. during their lifetime. walter ehrenburg's father moses' own a company called triangle publications and that company was the bracing slum. and the father was involved in this decade's. his father actually was sent to prison in 1940 for tax deviation and at that point walter took on the reins of triangle publications and it was in deep
financial problems and he was responsible for introducing a number of new publishing elements that were wildly successful. 17 magazine was launched in the early 1940s, the first magazine geared specifically for young women. there was this idea of tv guide and launched tv guide at a time when there were only 10% of american households to own televisions. that of course became the most popular magazine in america, had the highest circulation for decades and made the bulk of the fortune of triangle publications. walter had a genius for recognizing future trends and was able to use his company to get ahead of those trends. leonore was a delightful,
hospitable woman who was very typical of her generation. she was the woman behind the man, walter was the person who received the first recognition and he was a one who's certainly was the businessman whose moneys funded their life style. walter actually had a speech impediment, so he practiced every day, and form words and speak clearly and so he was very careful about his language and presentation so he was more reserved. and mrs. andnonburg was more light-hearted and engaging conversationalist. in the tree of the house, this is where you would have seen as you were welcome to sunnylands.
presidents, the queen of england, major political figures, great celebrities all came through the front doors. this space was used for receptions for the new year's eve parties that happened regularly. the furniture in this case was removed and it was said to have 110 people for a seated dinner and dancing. jimmy stewart might sit at the piano and play, bob hope entertained, frank sinatra. walter anonberg new ronald reagan going back to the 1930s. they had a long personal history and when ronald reagan was an actor in hollywood. so over time, that relationship which was deep and personal continued to, and when ronald reagan was governor of the state of california he came here and then of course after he had been
elective president he continued to come here. he came every single year for 18 of the anonberg new year's eve parties. and so that was a moment every year where hollywood and government came together in a large social gathering. otherwise the anonbergs really entertains in small groups. the anonbergs would invite these individuals who word their friends to spend time here and they were determining who those friends might enjoy meeting and create these kinds of connections that didn't exist before. jones use these elements of midcentury modern architecture to create a space that was informal, that could flow from place to place and at the same time took a huge space, this is
6,400 square feet which was the size of five average american homes in the 1960s. it doesn't feel overwhelming. it has a very comfortable quality to it and that is the combination of the architecture and the furniture groupings william haines designed. off of the atrium and living room, the room of memories. a very special room at sunnylands. the memories was named by the anonbergs. they made this determination that they wanted a space where they could keep the memories of the important friends and family and other individuals they had come in contact with during their lifetimes so there is a portrait of winston churchill's signed by winston churchill. he met walter anonberg in the late 1940s.
we have a photo of the anonbergs with prince charles, this one from 1986. the anonbergs had a really important relationship with the royal family so you see walter and queen elizabeth because he was the ambassador to the court of st. james and lived in london five years, they continued for the rest of their lives to correspond and connect. you see walter actually getting out of the carriage as he was going to be presented in london to the queen as he took on the job as ambassador. down here you actually see a photo of george bush signed with lasting appreciation, friendship to, here is george w. bush much
later in the anonbergs's life, the clintons with gratitude to your friendship from hillary rodham clinton and bill clinton. this wall is full of individual memories that record numerous conversations over decades in the anonbergs's life. clearly those individuals who were important to them over time made it to this wall. it isn't generally an individual whose a new, only interacted with only once, but rather people who became their friends. in addition, we have a photograph of ronald reagan sitting in this chair looking at the television in this cabinet in 1983 when gorbachev was speaking to the american people
about nuclear disarmament. at the same time, ronald reagan's speech to the soviet people was being broadcast. this important topic was critical in changing world political dynamic. for us it makes this an important historical spot in sunnylands. the anonbergs were definitely republicans and they rely flaw republicans. however, they crossed the aisle. and so actually walter anonberg had the philadelphia inquirer endorse lyndon johnson when he ran for president. so he didn't only support republicans, and the republicans he did support tended to be more centrist in relation to what we might see today. this is the yellow room.
it is one of five historic guest rooms at sunnylands. this room was the preferred presidential room. so the reagans always stayed in this room. it has a beautiful view. so did the bushes, margaret thatcher was here, colin powell with his wife were here, so really a prestigious list of room presidents. like all the rooms in the guest wing, this was differentiated by its color. we have a pink room and the peach room and a green and blue room with this yellow room and actually if you were staying here, you would have color coordinated jellybeans and specially selected books to read. this room, as one of the earliest rooms also had twin beds. we have it set up that way.
today if you visit sunnylands as a participant in one of our retreat's we actually changed this out and provide current retreat purchases with king size bed, more comfortable and with contemporary linens and all of that that you would have the opportunity to join that nice long list of important people who slept here before you. the anonbergs make a gift of this property to the nation for the purpose of continuing its history by a dynamic and relevant conversations among people today. we have an interesting mission. it is both exclusive and inclusive. so our property is being preserved and maintained so that it can be used by relatively small number of people for these high level retreats but at the same time it is being preserved